Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Finishing Friday's Writing on a Tuesday

I am very popular lately. Did you know this? It's true. Mostly just with my own kids, but still. It's enough popularity to last me a lifetime, I think. I am very rarely alone, and there is often someone touching me. This makes it very hard to concentrate, and if the person is hanging on my arm as if I am a climbing frame, it also makes it quite hard to type. So I have not been doing much typing that is unnecessary. I started this post with the photo of golden winter light last Friday night, when I thought I'd have an hour alone to concentrate, and then I didn't. I haven't been alone since then except to power nap for fifteen minutes on Saturday. This is my last ditch effort to write something to go with this photo. (Which is not to say that this post actually goes with this photo. But I will proceed anyway.)

I am very cognizant of the fact that my children will not be children forever, and I will not be home educating them forever either. Z already has plans to ditch me in favor of a theater program when she is fourteen. Neither of my kids will need me so much in the future, and so I am doing my best to be patient with what seem like ever-present needs, wants, and demands. Someday they will be out of the house more than they are in, and I will miss them. There is so much to love about their presence here.

But at the same time, I don't think it does anyone any favors to be dishonest about what parenthood is actually like. No one has ever said, "Have kids! They're terribly convenient!" Being a parent is to submit oneself to years of inconvenience, and at times a good deal of heartache, in the name of love. But still we do it, because the good does outweigh the bad in most cases. I suppose if we inadvertently end up raising a megalomaniac, I might change my mind about that, but I don't foresee that happening.

But what will happen is that sometimes I will make plans for myself that are impossible due to my kids' needs. I will put up with a thousand discomforts. More than that. I'll be asked hundreds of questions every day. I'll sit in front of my computer screen, and my children will ask me to turn on the Mary Poppins Returns soundtrack again, and I won't be able to think, because my computer is also the source of music when the kids want to listen, and "A Cover is Not the Book" will cause my mind to seize up. I will not finish a blog post once, twice, three times. The fourth time will be the charm (this time). And it will be fine. Because I'd rather they want to be with me than want to be as far away as possible. I'd rather have them here, now, than lose the chance. I wished to be a mother, and now I am one, and I would be a fool to resent the inconveniences that come along with a wish come true.

People ask me sometimes what I will do when my children are grown and gone. They mean to ask what I will do for work, but I don't really know about that. I have some ideas, but it's far enough out that I don't feel I need to think too hard about it. I hope instead that what I will do is to be grateful for the state I find myself in then. After all these years of wishing the house were just a bit more quiet, I hope I won't resent getting exactly what I wished for.

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